There are a million good outfielders and a million good strategies. There are pretty good values throughout the draft. The guys at the top are elite though, and at least one of them should be targeted. I target all of mine in the early rounds since you need 4 of them. Its always good to have at least one utility or bench outfielder in case one of your main 3 is in a slump and needs to sit the bench. Here are my top 50!!!! rankings.

  1. Carlos Gonzalez (COL)
  2. Ryan Braun (MIL)
  3. Carl Crawford (BOS)
  4. Nelson Cruz (TEX)
  5. Josh Hamilton (TEX)
  6. Matt Kemp (LAD)
  7. Jason Heyward (ATL)
  8. Matt Holliday (STL)
  9. Mike Stanton (FLA)
  10. Justin Upton (ARI)
  11. Ichiro Suzuki (SEA)
  12. Jay Bruce (CIN)
  13. Shin-Soo Choo (CLE)
  14. Delmon Young (MIN)
  15. Jacoby Ellsbury (BOS)
  16. Carlos Lee (HOU)
  17. Jose Bautista (TOR)
  18. Andrew McCutchen (PIT)
  19. Nick Markakis (BAL)
  20. Drew Stubbs (CIN)
  21. Jayson Werth (WAS)
  22. Andre Ethier (LAD)
  23. Vladimir Guerrero (BAL)
  24. Brett Gardner (NYY)
  25. Adam Jones (BAL)
  26. Michael Bourn (HOU)
  27. Hunter Pence (HOU)
  28. Chris Young (ARI)
  29. Alex Rios (CWS)
  30. Manny Ramirez (TB)
  31. Juan Pierre (CWS)
  32. BJ Upton (TB)
  33. Colby Rasmus (STL)
  34. Carlos Beltran (NYM)
  35. Nick Swisher (NYY)
  36. Curtis Granderson (NYY)
  37. Rajai Davis (TOR)
  38. Adam Lind (TOR)
  39. Logan Morrison (FLA)
  40. Austin Jackson (DET)
  41. Shane Victorino (PHI)
  42. Travis Snider (TOR)
  43. Torii Hunter (LAA)
  44. Angel Pagan (NYM)
  45. Jose Tabata (PIT)
  46. Luke Scott (BAL)
  47. Carlos Quentin (CWS)
  48. Michael Taylor (OAK)
  49. Cameron Maybin (SD)
  50. Dexter Fowler (COL)

Close Calls: Corey Hart, Ryan Raburn, Julio Borbon, Michael Morse, Kyle Blanks. Hart is typically ranked in the top 25, but I don’t see why. He had a fluke season last year and when you consider his AVG and HR drop this year he doesn’t crack the top 50. Other’s typically ranked in the top 50 who aren’t even close calls for me are Ben Zobrist, Grady Sizemore (who can’t run), Jason Bay, Bobby Abreu, Aubrey Huff, Vernon Wells, and Denard Span. Just don’t touch any of them.

Braun is #1 on any fantasy site. I like Cargo better. Crawford is a 5 tool player leading off for the best offensive in baseball. All three of these guys are great 1st round picks. If Nelson Cruz stays healthy he may win AL MVP. Yes, he’s better than Josh Hamilton. My projection for Cruz at 600 at bats is .290, 90, 40, 100, 30. How many guys hit 40 HR and steal 30 bases? Just him. He would be #1 on my list if there wasn’t a risk of injury. Hamilton should still hit 30 HR but his avg will fall between .300 and .310. And of course he will get hurt.

Kemp was ranked #3 overall last year so this is great value. He still has the ability to be a 1st rounder. Heyward can put up Alex Rodriguez numbers and could do so this year. Holliday does everything solidly. Mike Stanton may lead the league in HR this season. Your looking at little Ryan Howard. Stanton will hit at least 30 HR and could get as high as 50. Lots of people think Justin Upton will blow up and be the next big thing. He could, but I like guys like Cruz and Heyward better. I have Ichiro ranked higher than most people because of his elite average, runs, and stolen base total. For some reason he’s underrated. He’s not that old.

Jay Bruce could be a future MVP. People forget that he came up at 19 years old. Last year at age 23 he hit for average with 25 HR. This is the year he finally goes over 35 HR. He has the potential to be a 40 HR guy. I have Carlos lee much higher than he typically ranks. He had a great second half last year and should return to his 2009 form. A .300 avg with 25-30 HR can be expected, and he can fill in at 1B. McCutchen, Werth, and Ethier are being drafted too high. Markakis and Stubbs are being drafted too low. Stubbs will kill your average though. Guerrero should come close to last year’s numbers.

Gardner and Bourn are elite base stealers. So is Pierre and he goes a few rounds later. Adam Jones is being drafted too low. Pence, Young, and Rios are being drafted too high. Manny Ramirez has great value. He is much higher on my rankings than he typically gets drafted. He’s going to be a leader of the TB offense, protect Longoria, hit over .300, and show a little power. He’s a very good 3rd or 4th outfielder.

BJ Upton, Rasmus, Swisher, and Granderson are all good but hurt your average. I hate the park Beltran plays in or I would predict him to have a comeback year. Adam Lind will have better numbers than last year. Morrison should break out and hit .300 but doesn’t have a whole lot of power or speed. He’s a good backup. Austin Jackson’s numbers will fall, but he’s a good late source of hits and steals. Victorino is typically ranked in the top 25, but I don’t like him. He has a bad average, low power, and his stolen base total will drop. Stay away from him unless he falls 8 rounds (unlikely).

#’s 42-50 are all mediocre options. Snider will be a mediocre. Hunter already is mediocre. Pagan’s numbers are mediocre but can help your avg and sb total stay respectable. Tabata says he’s underrated, but I think he’s rated just right. Us Oriole’s fans know that Luke Scott is only good to own during his hot streaks. Carlos Quentin is very inconsistent and is much like Scott. Michael Taylor is a good prospect who should make the team but will only put up mediocre rookie numbers. And Maybin and Fowler are post hype sleepers who have the chance of finally producing and stealing a good amount of bases.

You should draft at least two outfielders before #23 on my list. Once you get to Vlad your at guys who should be your 3rd or 4th OF. Having any of those guys past #23 as a #1 or a #2 is a weak outfield. If you can’t get a first rounder then draft one or two of those higher guys in rounds 2-3. Don’t take Stanton, Bruce, or Young that high. You can get them at a great value rounds later. Bruce in round 5, Stanton in 9, Young in 10. Carlos Lee will be there in round 13. Manny Ramirez should be there around round 17. They are the best values at OF this year.

For statistics, comments, and projections on the top 1143 players of the 2011 Fantasy Baseball season purchase my highly accurate spreadsheet. It will put you into your fantasy baseball playoffs. $10 contact me at I will send an example of the 2010 spread sheet upon request.

Check out The Fantasy God’s other position break downs: